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57 in a 35: Four Days Before Trial, Ravnsborg Got Speeding Ticket

Jason Ravnsborg is evidently incorrigible. KSFY’s Austin Goss reports that four days before Ravnsborg formally pled guilty to two traffic misdemeanors to avoid jail time for the inattentive driving that led to the death of Joe Boever, Ravnsborg was ticketed for speeding:

South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg has obtained his seventh speeding ticket in seven years.

The most recent came in Hughes County Sunday, August 22nd at 8:54 PM.

Ravnsborg was charged with one 2nd degree misdemeanor for “Speeding On Other Roadways” while doing 57 mph in a 35 mph speed zone. Ravnsborg has yet to pay the $177.50 fine associated with the ticket, due by September 20th [Austin Goss, “SD Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg Gets Speeding Ticket, His 7th Since 2014,” KSFY, 2021.08.31].

57 in a 35? 20 minutes after sunset? Four days before your lawyer goes to court to say what an honorable man you are and that you didn’t want to hurt anyone?

57 in a 35 is not casual speeding. It’s not a brief press of the gas to get around a truck. It’s not keeping up with surrounding traffic (traffic? in Pierre? on Sunday night?). It’s not a momentary lapse of attention (though Ravnsborg is clearly prone to that) caused by the excitement of talking to someone on the phone (again, a Ravnsborg proclivity).

57 in a 35 is a willful decision to flout the law and drive like a menace.

Tom Lawrence recognizes both the arrogance demonstrated by the Attorney General’s contempt for the laws he was elected to enforce and the impact this reckless behavior could have had on Judge John Brown’s sentencing decision last week:

We really didn’t need further evidence that Jason Ravnsborg is an arrogant man who doesn’t think the law applies to him.

But we got it.

…What we need to know now is, did prosecutors know he was still breaking traffic laws? Were they aware the man who ran over and killed Joe Boever on the west edge of Highmore was still driving so carelessly, so recklessly, so lawlessly?

If they did, why did they accept the plea deal?

If they did not, why not? Shouldn’t this important and revealing information have been made available in such a high-profile case? [Tom Lawrence, “Ravnsborg’s Speeding Ticket Days Before Court Appearance Reveals Once Again His Arrogance and Lawlessness,” South Dakota Standard, 2021.08.31]

If I were headed to court Thursday with every reporter in the state watching, I wouldn’t dare speed or blow a red light or do anything else illegal with my car that the press and the judge might hear about. I’d probably park my car and walk or bike everywhere. Especially if my crimes led to a man’s death, if I were getting off easy with mere misdemeanor charges, and if I still faced a bruising civil suit from the family of the man I killed, I’d do everything I could to avoid creating even the appearance that I might be ignoring public safety.

Only the most arrogant public figure could think that he could commit such a serious traffic violation (more than 20 over the limit anywhere poses a grave risk to other drivers and pedestrians who aren’t expecting such speed, not to mention the speeder himself, who is overdriving the conditions on that road) while facing a high-profile trial for traffic violations that led to a man’s death. Ravnsborg’s flagrant speeding on the eve of his guilty plea and sentencing demonstrate a pattern of contempt for the law fly in the face of both the arguments made in his favor by his defense attorney at last Thursday’s sentencing and his oath of office. Ravnsborg’s latest crime warrants a review of his sentence by Judge John Brown as well as his swift removal from the office of Attorney General.


  1. Bonnie B Fairbank 2021-08-31 09:03

    Roundboy abviously attended the Kristi Noem H*ck On Wheels Driving Skool, no? Back in the mid-90s my ancient Honda Civic broke down on a residential street in Denver and I ended up parking it against a parking curb, but (*gasp*) FACING THE WRONG WAY. $116 ticket.

  2. Dicta 2021-08-31 09:04

    Can’t feel bad if you dont have a conscience.

  3. mike from iowa 2021-08-31 09:37

    Skunkbear contaminated my home county back in 96….

    There have also been two Iowa citations Ravnsborg’s racked up. Officials cited that he drove 11-15 mph over in Lyon County in 2003 and 6-10 mph over the limit in Cherokee County in 1996.

  4. RST Tribal Member 2021-08-31 09:38

    And he said to the officer, “didn’t kill anyone this time”, “ how about giving me a break?”.

    This is what SD ends up with with a one-party dominant state. Inbreeding. Incompetent leading incompetent. Blind leading the blind. Dumb and dumber lead by dumbest.

    We tend to recycle politicians on my reservation. Close comparison, but our leaders don’t drive around running over people. Ops, one did about 20 years ago, kicked the person out of leadership, then prohibited from holding office in tribal government for life.

  5. mike from iowa 2021-08-31 09:42

    As for pedestrian/vehicle crashes, I am personally aware of one where the head of Civil Defense in my home town routinely sped through a hospital zone to his home across the road from said hospital. He struck a 7 year old child attempting to cross the street in the middle of the block to get home half a block away. The child died, the driver was not cited because the kid was not in a designated crosswalk.

    The deceased child had a twin who got to witness the whole thing. Both were my youngest brothers.

  6. Loren 2021-08-31 09:53

    Racking up tickets, court appearances and fines, who does he think he is, the Governor?

  7. cibvet 2021-08-31 10:23

    I’m surprised they even gave him a ticket. Most law enforcement merely flash a badge and are merrily on their way.

  8. Porter Lansing 2021-08-31 11:12

    Sorry for your continued sorrow, MFI…

    That’s something you can feel free to share, anytime you’d like to talk about it, amigo.

  9. Victoria Even 2021-08-31 12:52

    I’d be interested to know if he was in a State car or his own personnel car when he got picked up

  10. Nick Nemec 2021-08-31 13:35

    57mph in a 35mph zone in Hughes County leads me to believe he was driving on one of the streets in Pierre, possibly Euclid Avenue, Sioux Avenue or Harrison Avenue. Even after sunset there is a lot of pedestrian traffic on these streets, Euclid and Harrison go through residential areas for much of their length.

    This man has learned nothing and needs stiffer punishment that the fine off the chart. He is a habitual offender.

  11. Donald Pay 2021-08-31 13:55

    Nick is certainly right about Euclid Avenue. Back in the 80’s I lived a block west of Euclid, as did Dusty Johnson’s family, on North Grand Avenue, and Kevin Woster lived a block farther west. Speeders have been a problem for decades in that area. Cops and highway patrol try to keep the speeding down. They should just park a cop there permanently.

  12. Mark Anderson 2021-08-31 14:19

    Loren is right about the Noem too, it runs in the family. Katherine Harris who elected Bush, sped by me on Tamiami Trail on my way to work. She even took my parking spot at Ringling College, what can you say? Life goes by Republicans too quickly. I was shocked she was taking an art class.

  13. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-08-31 14:27

    Major Correction 2021.09.01 17:02 CDT: Bob Mercer says on Twitter that the Suburban in which Ravnsborg was tickted for speeding was privately owned.

    Original comment 2021.08.31: It gets worse: Arielle Zionts at SDPB reports Ravnsborg was driving a state-owned vehicle, a 2020 Chevy SUV, when he was pulled over for 57 in a 35.

  14. mike from iowa 2021-08-31 14:37

    Thanks, Porter. This happened in 1972. After nearly 50 years you’d think I’d have gotten past this. I can hold a grudge with the best of them.

  15. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-08-31 14:45

    Republican Representative Will Mortensen, one of the sponsors of the original articles of impeachment during Session, says Ravnsborg needs to go:

    “And you’ve heard from about every law enforcement group that he should leave office and you’ve heard from the executive branch a couple of times on that same note,” Mortenson says. “Those are the two entities that the Attorney General’s office is supposed to serve and interface with the most. I continue to believe that would be the best outcome for our state.”

    Mortenson says legislative leadership will decide whether to bring articles of impeachment against Ravnsborg [Lee Strubinger, “SD Lawmakers Call for Ravnsborg to Step Down,” SDPB Radio, 2021.08.30].

    Speeding in a state SUV isn’t going to rally support from his fellow Republicans.

  16. Arlo Blundt 2021-08-31 15:35

    well… leave him alone…the longer this jerk is in office, the better the political climate for the struggling Democratic Party…the Dems don’t have to create a “big issue”..Ravensborg creates and exacerbates the issue of Republican malfeasance every day he is in office.

  17. grudznick 2021-08-31 18:10

    Why do you think the Conservatives with Common Sense are out rooting on Mr. Jackley amongst the delegates to the conventions, Mr. Blundt? When Mr. Ravnsborg finally flushes his police hat down the terlet, who do you think the Governor will appoint?

  18. mike from iowa 2021-08-31 18:20

    How One Attorney General Avoided Prison, Stayed In Office After Fatal Crash

    from MSNBC. If you have Ravnsborg/Boever fatigue, you won’t be interested in this video.

  19. buckobear 2021-08-31 19:13

    … and we could have had a real Attorney General.

  20. Jake 2021-08-31 20:00

    Oh well, South Dakota voters that elected him simply because he was Republican, never really did any comparison to his opponent-a super-qualified, conscientious man of principle. Oh yeah, cuz he was a Democrat…..

    A lot of truth in the statement “They got what they deserved!”

  21. Arlo Blundt 2021-08-31 20:37

    Mr. G-who do you think the Governor will appoint???? well…probably Ewald C. Hasbeensom former States Attorney in Shovel Lake County who is also a respected judge of suckling pigs at every State Fair sine 1968….eminently qualified.

  22. grudznick 2021-08-31 20:48

    Mr. Hasbeensom seems like a swell enough fellow, but my money would be on this young lady, Governor Noem, having to choose between some lawyer fellow on her own staff; the deputy fellow for Mr. Ravnsborg who has served well for a long time and served under Mr. Jackley in the past, and least likely would be Mr. Jackley himself as that seems presumptuous and Mr. Jackley will probably mop the floors at the convention after serving the stakes, acting as MC, and cleaning the tables.

  23. Richard Schriever 2021-08-31 20:50

    grudz, Jackley is an even worse choice. Why? It’s like comparing Reagan to Trump, Reagan being the worse because he was slicker at hiding his malevolent acts toward the general populace of the country vs. Trump’s brutish approach to most everything. Ravnsburg is an oafish criminal. Jackley a slick one. You are easily fooled by the slick.

  24. Guy 2021-08-31 21:07

    Ask Governor Noem how MANY speeding tickets she got before she ran against Stephanie Herseth for Congress in 2010, to include running through stop signs. Now, in my life I will admit I received 2 speeding tickets in the past 20 years: 1in South Dakota and 1 in Minnesota. (Make sure you are traveling 55 mph on most 2-lanes in the “Land of 10,000 Lakes” as I found out the hard way). In no way, could I match Governor Noem’s record on speeding and running through stop signs.

  25. grudznick 2021-08-31 21:09

    I did not put forth my favorite or which of the fellows I would vote for, Mr. Schriever. You are doing what the libbies call “projecting” onto poor grudznick. Please stop, or show me where grudznick said Mr. Jackley was the preferable candidate.

  26. O 2021-08-31 21:18

    Circling back to an immigration discussion on this blog a long while back, does this mean that we should refer to AG Ravnsborg as an “illegal?” He is here and he is breaking the law.

    To Arlo’s point, I have to believe the SD GOP will impeach and allow a Gubernatorial appointment so this all can never be a campaign issue. Not because he did something wrong, but that Ravnsborg opens up a glimmer of hope if he were to run — even against .. … .. a DEMOCRAT? The SD GOP deep state will want to ensure that power remains consolidated in house.

  27. Guy 2021-08-31 21:22

    Grudz, Brendan Johnson needs to run against Mr. Jackley. Where are the Democrats on this? They would have a PRIME candidate for Attorney General with Brendan Johnson – based on his law background – and how he recently supported the will of the voters on the Marijuana Issue. Democrats: I’m an Independent trying to help you out and all we hear is crickets. Labor Day is drawing very close and it seems as if the South Dakota Democrats really do not care that time is running out for them to field a team of candidates?!? Maybe the SDDP really does (secretly) support Noem, Thune and Dusty…and maybe Jackley?!?

  28. mike from iowa 2021-09-01 10:11

    Ravnsborg does not have to do community service as he received no suspended jail time. Judge contacted lawyers and said he could not impose community service.

  29. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-09-01 17:14

    Major correction: Arielle Zionts and Bob Mercer have both tweeted today that Ravnsborg was driving a privately owned vehicle when he was pulled over for speeding on Sunday, August 22, in Pierre.

    According to the speeding ticket posted by KELO-TV, Hughes County Deputy D. Sack stopped Ravnsborg near the intersection of Garfield and Capitol on the east side of Pierre at 8:54 p.m. that night. In the bodycam footage released by Sheriff Callahan, Ravnsborg says he was “coming down the hill” on the way to dispose of his recyclables.

  30. grudznick 2021-09-01 21:33

    Young Ms. Zionts often gets things wrong. This is not a surprising correction having to be made because she cannot understand what a bronze star license plate is compared to a state license plate. Ms. Zionts, get better faster.

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